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Referee- Family Court

Ramsey County District Court

  • Second Judicial District – St. Paul, MN
  • Full Time – $152,319.60 Annually
  • Category: Legal / Attorney
  • Department: Second Judicial District

The Second Judicial District is accepting applications for a Referee position. This position is appointed by the Chief Judge and will work across court divisions with primary responsibility in family court matters and includes full case responsibility for all assigned family court cases. Also included in the work of this position are domestic abuse, harassment, housing court, and civil matters as assigned.  This position supports the Judicial Branch’s mission to increase access to justice for all people in the State of Minnesota.
Work location is the Ramsey County Courthouse, in downtown Saint Paul, with some flexibility to work remotely.

Interviews for this position will take place on Thursday, December 1st. 

The Minnesota Judicial Branch is pleased to offer a comprehensive benefits package including medical, dental, and optional benefits and paid vacation, sick leave, and holidays. To learn more about benefits, click here.Example of Duties

Family Court

  • Responsible for all aspects of assigned cases.
  • Managing and monitoring the progress of the case, conducting trials, hearings, and case management conferences and drafting orders for co-signature.

Domestic Abuse and Harassment Court

  • Reviews and decides petitions for ex parte relief in domestic abuse and harassment matters.
  • Hears common calendars in domestic abuse and harassment court and drafts orders for co-signature.

Civil Court

  • May hear common initial calendars in housing court and draft orders for co-signature.
  • Attends housing partner meetings as needed; for example, quarterly landlord/tenant meetings.
  • May hear special term calendars including name changes, minor settlements, and orders to show cause.

In all areas

  • Conducts contested and uncontested trials, hearings, and motions. 
  • Instructs parties and witnesses as to their rights.
  • Questions witnesses; inquires as to the causes for which the persons are brought before the court.
  • Rules on objections to evidence and evaluates evidence.
  • Makes decisions on factual and legal questions; prepares findings and orders regarding the disposition of cases.
  • Completes and prepares orders for a judge’s signature; confers with attorneys and the public in regard to court matters. 
  • Conducts legal research to prepare for court proceedings and litigated matters.
  • Collaborates with other judicial officers and confers with attorneys, justice partners, and the public in regard to court matters. 
  • Supervises one assigned law clerk and court reporter.
  • Serves on committees and workgroups. 
  • Attends local bench meetings.

Typical Qualifications

Minimum Education and Experience

  • Juris Doctor from an accredited law school.
  • At least seven years of progressive legal experience, including at least three years’ experience in family law, as a practicing attorney or judicial officer.
  • A candidate for this position must be comfortable with and able to effectively use the technology used by the court.
  • As this position may be working partially remotely, access to reliable internet connection is required during this time.

Minimum Licensure/Certifications

  • Admission to the Bar of the State of Minnesota and eligibility to practice law before the courts of the State of Minnesota.

Minimum Knowledge, Skills and Abilities

  • Extensive knowledge of state laws and court rulings as they pertain to the assigned division of the court, specifically family and domestic abuse/harassment matters.
  • Ability to be fair, impartial, and sensitive to the needs of a diverse population, including individuals from marginalized populations.
  • Demonstrated ability to be flexible and collaborative with team members and justice partners and establish and maintain effective working relationships with others.
  • Thorough knowledge of general and specific law, state laws, established precedents, and sources of legal reference.
  • Thorough knowledge of court procedures, rules of evidence, and trial and courtroom procedures.
  • Ability to apply legal principles and specialized knowledge to individual cases and problems.
  • Ability to prepare for hearings and trials, hear difficult cases and present findings, decisions, and other material clearly and logically in oral and written form.
  • Ability to maintain control and courtroom decorum with parties in crisis who often have limited understanding of court proceedings.
  • Ability to effectively manage a caseload with minimal staff support.
  • Ability to work well under pressure with excellent case and time management skills.
  • Possess a fair, even, and impartial demeanor and temperament.
  • Knowledge of and experience with various forms of alternative dispute resolution.

Supplemental Information

Supplemental Information
The Minnesota Judicial Branch (MJB) is committed to providing fair and equal access to justice. If you share this same commitment, desire a meaningful career serving the public, and want the opportunity to make a difference for your community, consider a career with us. We celebrate and are committed to the principles of diversity and inclusion, and actively seek and value diversity in professional background and cultural characteristics.  We are intentional and mindful about the organizational culture we are building, seeking broad-minded individuals with robust capabilities who value supporting one another’s growth.

Minnesota Judicial Branch employees consistently express pride in their public service and in the quality of programs and services provided to customers, as well as appreciation for the teamwork and collaboration that is promoted within the MJB. To learn more about working for the Minnesota Judicial Branch, watch this video.

TO APPLY:  Apply online at  Complete and submit your online application with resume, cover letter, and writing sample attached by the closing date and time.    

Employment offers may be rescinded if the required criminal background check identifies job related convictions.

EQUAL OPPORTUNITY EMPLOYER: It is the policy of the Minnesota Judicial Branch that all decisions regarding employment are made without discrimination on the basis of disability. Please let us know if you need a reasonable accommodation for a disability to participate in the employee selection process by contacting HR,

The Minnesota Judicial Branch is an Equal Opportunity Employer. It is the policy of the Minnesota Judicial Branch that all decisions regarding recruitment, hiring, promotions and other terms and conditions of employment be made without discrimination on the grounds of race, color, creed, religion, national origin, gender, marital status, status with regard to public assistance, membership or activity in a local human rights commission, disability, sexual orientation, or age. We value and encourage applicants from diverse backgrounds.

AgencyMinnesota Judicial BranchAddress25 Rev Dr Martin Luther King Jr Blvd

St Paul, Minnesota, 55155Phone651/284-3863

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